Barry Newhouse
Voice of America
October 29, 2008

Pakistani and Afghan political and tribal leaders meeting in Islamabad Tuesday have agreed to seek talks with Taliban insurgents in a bid to limit violence along their shared border. The announcement came after a two-day meeting described as a mini-jirga in the Pakistani capital. VOA’s Barry Newhouse reports from Islamabad.

  • A d v e r t i s e m e n t

The two-day “mini-jirga” in Islamabad ended with pledges to create new committees in both countries that will try to establish contact with Taliban groups.

Afghanistan’s former foreign minister Abdullah Abdullah said those committees will work independently from any other peace talks being pursued by the two governments.

“We agreed that contacts should be established with the opposition,” he said. “Apart from whatever else is happening in that regard, joint contacts will be established through jirga-gai by using other influential figures through the opposition groups in both countries.”

Representatives of the Islamabad jirga said the term “opposition groups” refers to all those involved in the armed conflict in both countries.

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